HomeHuman to cat relationshipAmericans Treat Their Pets Like People. Discuss


Americans Treat Their Pets Like People. Discuss — 10 Comments

  1. Yeah, a year or so late, but I came across this article while searching for info unrelated, but just couldnt pass this up. An article about nothing? Only thing it seems to do is further reinforce generalizations and stereotypes. Americans “this”, Brits “that”…what about good people and bad people? We both got ’em both.

    I understand what the writer was trying to do, but even he, at the end of his article, circles right back to the beginning. An endless loop of fodder. The comments are quite telling though. There is obvious anti American sentiment, seemingly perpetuated by the idea that ALL Americans have the same values, beliefs, etc.

    Many, many breeders in America make you sign legally binding contracts to NEVER declaw or they will not sell you their kitten, and possibly even take it back if you violate said contract. Usually declawing is done, not to make the cat more human, but because ignorant cat owners dont want their furniture or whatever clawed to destruction, or are afraid of getting clawed or injured themselves. It seems ignorance begets ignorance. “Let cats be cats”?, sure..just dont forget they are domesticated; humans did that, effectively making cats not cats a long time ago(but not as long as canines).

    And how does any human know what a cat “wants to do”? “Cat dignity”??? Really? Dignity is a HUMAN trait, not feline. You wanting your cat to have dignity is in fact treating your cat like a human. So go ahead and think what you want, its obvious you will anyway. Just dont let all that British pride get in the way of breaking the boundaries, physical and mental, that exist in an already divided global community. We all love cats(yeah, another human trait; whether you want to admit it or not), and we all like to believe our cats “love” us back(Right?).

    We should be celebrating our SIMILARITIES, discussing the differences, and informing each other to spread accurate knowledge. Humans domesticated dogs for survival in a symbiotic relationship, we domesticated cats for our “pleasure”. In fact, I joke often that CATS are the ones that have “domesticated” US… Additionally, I find great wisdom in a bumper sticker I have seen that states simply, “The more people I meet, the more I like my cat.” Coming upon this particular page makes that last one just a bit more poignant. Hate/criticize/whatever America all you want, but at least do so from an informed position…and try to keep an open mind.

    Maybe, just maybe, the human “infestation” currently on this planet will survive to continue to take care of not only ourselves, but our domesticated “companions”.

    • Americans “this”, Brits “that”…what about good people and bad people? We both got ‘em both.

      Yes, there are good and bad in both countries there are also differences in culture. Quite large differences. It is fair and sensible to discuss them.

      No matter how you package it declawing is a North American phenomenon. It is exclusive to this region and it must say something about the culture and people and what it says in my opinion is not good.

      Sure there are millions of Americans who hate it but 20+ million cats are declawed causing an untold amount of pain for human convenience. Not good.

      Hate/criticize/whatever America all you want, but at least do so from an informed position…and try to keep an open mind.

      I don’t hate Americans and neither does Margolis. I actually like a lot about America. However, on declawing alone I have a right to hate America. It is horrendous and I love cats. It seems that you are overly sensitive to any negative comments about America. I criticise the UK all the time.

      Many, many breeders in America make you sign legally binding contracts to NEVER declaw

      Yes, but an equal number don’t. The AVMA allows it (the AVMA are useless). Many vets promote declawing. This is madness as it is a breach of their oath.

      This is page on complications of declawing.

      Please read this and digest:


      The article is solid, enlightened and well researched. I dislike your defensive reaction.

      • I know all about the evils of declawing, and of vets who push the operation all the time just to make money(one of the problems of Capitalism, unfortunately played out at the expense of crippling/killing millions of cats, among a few other “atrocities”). They are worse than doctors IMO. I “preach” no declaw everywhere I go, and I dont have to attack an entire Continent at once, or Country, or even the poor state of Utah, to do so…yes even at our state level there are many different cultures and “regions”, even with different state laws. You however seem intent to place “blame” here, and spread it with your little butterknife of ignorance on this page. Sure, you got a whole bunch of British cheerleaders on your side…everybody loves to hate America, and Americans. Your statements above both confirm and deny that: What does that say about your writing, your thought process? You clearly didnt fashion your response to me with an open mind, you just stepped right back up on that anti American soapbox of yours and ignored most of what I originally said. Only picking out the parts you could “tear apart” with the same rhetoric all over your comments section. I thought as a “writer” you just might be able to see “reason”…however, correlation does not equal causation….;).

        So you missed my “point”; or you are just saving face for what seems to be a rather narrow minded readership you have here. The only reason I posted was in hopes of opening up a “constructive” dialog. Instead I have to sit here and repeat what I said(insanity), AND further defend myself because I am an American. And by your thought process, I am the same as all other Americans. You even felt compelled to “shock” me with declawing “horror show” pictures/articles, again…this is not news to me, and many other PEOPLE here in America…even a few non Americans here. You assumed that because I am American I have never even seen pictures of what declawing does… You are just putting more bricks in the wall. Obviously you want that wall…it is good for readership amongst your “fans”.

        Disliking a perceived defensive reaction on my part, only further confirms your unwillingness to “work together”.

        For the record, “solid, enlightened, and well researched” must mean totally different things in our “two” cultures. Anything “well researched” will have references(those are what back your story up). Not that I am denying the numbers you spewed out, but with out references…they dont mean anything. Even with references I would be surprised if they are unbiased, and therefore legitimate. Its about as solid as a bowel movement the day after taco night.

        What is interesting is that with out even looking at the “pictures” link you “gave” me, I notice that it is in the State of “Utah”…known for being VERY culturally different from the rest of the USA(and the world) in MANY ways. Look it up “researcher”, and see if you can understand what I mean…again, you might have to pry open that closed mind of yours…I know it hurts…but that is the only true path to “enlightenment”. Not regurgitating some other writer’s work, to spur obviously biased conversation amongst your “single culture” that you seem to think you have there.

        The WORST part is the reason you missed my point is by getting defensive YOURSELF. Cant handle a little criticism??? Your original story looped right back to the beginning at the end and you even admit it in the original story. I believe that is the definition of insanity, or at least one of them. …doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different result…

        Perhaps I am a bit insane for thinking that anyone that could write(err paraphrase) such as you have done might actually keep an open mind. You have NO IDEA WHO I AM and WHAT I KNOW. You are lumping all of America into ONE group, ONE culture…REALLY??? One culture in America??? I can understand “one culture” from a country with an even more antiquated legal system than ours, and a “royal” family tree with not enough branches. But hey, I guess I was over optimistic in your understanding and bias…

        Enjoy your little circle jerk there…I am sure you will all please each other eventually, even “Mrs. Felix”.

        Good Day Sir….too bad we couldnt help more cats “together”, instead of arguing about ignorance and intolerance. “We” are worse than “my” American Congress… …and who suffers???(besides your bruised ego)….the cats… Your priorities are as obvious as your bias.

  2. But cats are NOT people so I don’t think it in any way clever to boast they are treated like people.
    Would they dress a dog?Put it in a stroller?
    Let cats keep their dignity,let them BE CATS

  3. Dear Editor,

    I note your article of 22 June concerning “cats as humans”. I feel it is my duty to respond to the slight to the British People, offered therein by Mrs. Margolis. She is, if I may say so, a woman of lamentably small education in the British Arts.

    I must point out for the benefit of your readers that Mr. Louis Wain, an artist and a man of generosity, and a True Englishman, was head and shoulders above any American who casually imitates his style today. Why must the myth persist that Americans invented the clever idea of transmogrifying cats to humans? I, as an upright defender of our British cultural heritage, resist the idea that “Americans invent everything”.

    Mrs. Felix Foote

    Inchingcat House
    Greater Sussex

    • Mrs Felix Foote we expect being English that you have all your toe ends and claws intact just as we do and that your family are as horrified as ours are at the very thought of cats being legally disabled every day in America, because declawing is one thing they DID invent over there.

  4. Well we all know it’s wrong to stereotype people because life just isn’t like that, everyone is different whatever country or nation they live in, but I’m a bit guilty of doing that very thing myself with some of my comments on declawing for example, I admit I refer to the USA as being pro declaw when I know very well there are many, many, maybe even millions of people as appalled by it as we are who are working day after day to get it banned. It’s the old “all tarred with the same brush” thing. But strollers and clothes for pets, I hate them! I’ve seen clothes for cats and dogs in this country, in £ shops, and I wonder what sort of moron is going to buy them and dress their cat or dog up as a mini cowboy or Santa. There may even be strollers in this country, maybe in London Michael? I hope not, I hope I never see a cat in a hybrid pushchair because I fear my head will pop with the rush of pressure from my blood boiling.
    We should be celebrating the differences between cat and human and dog and human and marvelling at the miracle that makes us able to live happily beside another species, not trying to turn them into mini-me’s.

  5. I laughed out loud when I saw the title of this Michael.
    Well I don’t know what planet Ruth Margolis lives on but never in a month of Sundays would I agree that Americans treat their pets like people while they still declaw cats there.
    As for dressing cats up and taking them out in prams, do some people really believe cats want that?
    Of course they don’t, cats want to be cats, they don’t want to be people. They don’t want to wear clothes and be taken out like babies in prams, they want to use their own feet, roll in the grass, feel the sun on their fur, do what cats do.
    Yes there are good things about America and that’s the anti declaw people who know cats are not people and that they need their claws to be what they were born to be….CATS…..Cats are family but in a different form to human family and just as we don’t want to go hunting rodents, they don’t want to do what we do.

    • Margolis made this list of things that she didn’t like about Americans, one of which was treating cats as people. The idea actually cuts two ways. If a person treats a cat as a person it should benefit the cat because people generally treat other people better than they treat cats. However, on the other side, treating a cat as a person is failing to respect the cat as a cat and trying to make a cat like a person. This can lead to some unfortunate consequences.

      There is only one sure thing: cats should be respected for what they are and not what we might want them to be.

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